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Safety/Reliability

Toyota’s CEO Apologizes for Recalls

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Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda FbaPPs
Fifteen days after Toyota announced a recall of more than 5 million vehicles in the U.S. for sticking accelerator pedals, the company’s president and grandson of its founder made a formal apology in Japan on Friday night. But is this a sincere apology or was he forced to do so because his company is trapped in a corner? Follow the jump for a video of Mr. Toyoda’s apology and for his full press statement…

PRESS APOLOGY:

Statement by Toyota President Akio Toyoda

I, Akio Toyoda, deeply regret the inconvenience and concern caused to our customers and others by our recent recalls of multiple vehicle models across multiple regions.

Today, as so many people have expressed their sense of unease, I realized the necessity of asking you all here on short notice to share with you the following.

As Toyota revealed yesterday, new Prius now in showrooms include an improvement. For Prius in the hands of customers, I have instructed that consideration be made as soon as possible regarding the way to address such units. Once a decision is made we will inform the public.
As for the accelerator-pedal recall in the United States, Europe, China and other countries and regions, repair-work preparations are being made at our dealers. As soon as these preparations are complete, once again, we will inform you.

From Toyota’s beginning, “contributing to society through the manufacture of automobiles” has been its key principle. To that end, since taking office in June last year, I have endeavored, based on our “customer first” and “genchi genbutsu” fundamentals, to thoroughly establish a product-focused management.

However, we, the ones supposed to relay to people the attractiveness of automobiles, have, instead, imparted on them worry. I regret this more than anything.

Under the banner, “Let’s build better cars”, we will go back to the basics of “customer first” and “genchi genbutsu”, and once more, deeply consider what “customer first” really means. All our employees around the world, all of our dealers and all of our suppliers will unify in their utmost efforts to regain the trust of our customers as soon as possible.

As for specific actions, our Executive Vice President Shinichi Sasaki will soon brief you. Let me just say that I will take the lead toward improving quality around the world, by establishing a global quality special task force that will conduct regional quality improvement activities.

Concrete action plans
The Committee headed by the President will conduct various improvement initiatives.

The key initiatives are,

First, while verifying the causes that led to the recalls, Toyota will once again inspect every process — quality in design, quality in production, quality in sales and quality in service.

Second, Toyota will enhance the customer information research offices to improve regional information collection and genchi-genbutsu activities.
Third, to develop quality-management professionals, Toyota will establish an “Automotive Center of Quality Excellence” in key regions.

Fourth, Toyota will seek confirmation and evaluation from outside experts — in line with industry’s best practices — of its newly improved quality-control management, based on the above improvements.

In addition, Toyota will work to increase the frequency of communication between itself and regional authorities. To provide customers with satisfying products in each and every region, Toyota has long promoted the autonomy of its regional subsidiaries. From now on, we intend to further this autonomy, listen carefully to each and every customer and improve quality.

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Plug-in/Electric Car

Tesla Vehicles Get A Sentry, Plus Dog-Safe Mode

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Red Tesla model-3 performance, rear motion

Potential thieves will have to deal with a classical German composer.

Tesla has introduced a new ‘Sentry Mode’ security feature and a dog-friendly mode that should make its vehicles even more interesting than they already are.

Sentry Mode keep an eye on the car by using the vehicles’ 360-degree cameras to record any potentially mischievous individuals in the vicinity. According to Tesla CEO Elon Musk, the car will automatically play Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D Minor if there is any disturbance.

Engineers also built upon the Cabin Overheat Protection system, which keeps the interior at a safe temperature for hours when the car is off.

As for doggie, the Model 3, Model S and Model X now have a dedicated “dog mode” that plays music and keeps the air conditioner activated when your canine friend is in the vehicle alone. It also displays a message that reads reads “I’m fine my owner will be right back” on the touchscreen, a provision likely intend to help avoid insurance claims if a concerned citizen or police officer mistakenly feels the need to break into the vehicle to rescue an animal.

All of the features were implemented via over-the-air software updates, so no need to buy a new Tesla to have them.

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Safety/Reliability

Is Your Car Ready For The Holiday Season?

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Volkswagen Freezing Winter

The most important thing every holiday season is your safety.

The holidays are here, and with it comes a lot of errands to fulfill. However, whether you’re driving several hours to spend time with family or braving the roads for last minute gifts, it’s important to never forget about your safety on the road, especially when considering the increased incidences of accidents caused by wet and icy roads.

One critically is to make sure your car is prepared. Even if you are the proud owner of a reliable Volvo with all the safety bells and whistles, it must be in optimal driving condition for winter conditions.

Now, you may think about going to a service station, but have you ever considered doing it all on your own instead? Assuming you have the necessary skills, doing so could spare you lots of time and money.

If you do decide to prep your Volvo yourself, you will need to find all the necessary spare parts that are compatible with your car. Places like provide a huge assortment of all the spare parts you might need for you vehicle, including a large selection of brake system parts, filter parts, engine parts, suspension parts, steering parts, electric parts, heater parts, oils and fluid parts, repair kits, pipes and hoses, exhaust system parts, body parts, lights and mirrors, transmission parts and bearings and seals.

It does not matter you’re looking for — all you have to do is search for the particular item on their domain, and you will surely find it.

Don’t hesitate to get your car ready for winter road conditions to help make sure you and your beloved ones stay safe on the road this holiday season.

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Ram

New Ram 1500 Aces Crash Test, But Fails To Get Top Safety Pick Rating

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New, 2019 RAM 1500 IIHS Crash test

It missed out on the coveted rating because seemingly innocuous oversight.

Make no mistake, the all-new, 2019 Ram 1500 is a very safe pickup truck. It aced nearly all of the Insurance Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s six crashworthiness tests, including the small overlap front, moderate overlap front, passenger-side small overlap, side, roof strength and head restraints tests, whereas the previous generation Ram 1500 received a less impressive marginal rating in the driver-side small overlap front test and the roof strength test.

Unfortunately, it missed out on the coveted Top Safety Pick rating because its best available headlights earned only a marginal rating.

It’s worth noting that the IIHS introduced the passenger-side small overlap test in 2017, and 2019 Ram 1500 is the first pickup to undergo and, thus, ace the test. It’s optional front crash prevention system also earned a superior rating, helping avoid crashes at 12 mph and 25 mph as tested.

Does a marginal rating for the headlights deter you from getting the new RAM 1500? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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